The cost to taxpayers has been estimated at $1.2 million for the securing the water rights, which, Montrose county officials say, would secure the water supply for the West End for decades. It would also cost, Davis said, between $200 and $300 million to build the storage reservoirs.
Of the projected volume, she said, “It's enough water to serve a population of 26,000, and we know that's not a number predicted in the West End,” Davis further explained, this week.
Montrose County anticipates that its West End population will reach 9,400 by 2060, she said. “Obviously this water is for more than agricultural and residential growth, and it must be assumed that it's for industrial growth for uranium mining and milling, which is a whole other issue,” Davis said. Because of the high costs associated with pursuing these water rights, and how it opens the county to lawsuits by opposing parties, she said, “I have to ask if we are wisely using taxpayer money.”